Each new year brings new opportunities. For the City of Chicago, that meant launching a brand-new tradition: Chi-Town Rising. Event organizers had a bold vision: Create a live and televised destination event to extend the celebration from New York City’s iconic Times Square ball drop. The winter celebration was created to spark excitement for locals and increase tourism for the city as a New Year’s Eve destination.
The event would also serve as a showcase of the city’s energy and excitement throughout the winter season. Freeman was selected by the executive producers at Arena Partners and One618 to assist with every aspect from production to sponsored parties.
Winter in downtown Chicago presents a unique set of challenges; to guarantee all technology would withstand every element, LED panels were tested overnight in freezing temperatures. Team collaboration and attention to detail ensured that all activities and live entertainment were executed with perfection.
A show for all
The main stage at Chi-Town Rising was rockin’ all night long with live performances by bands American Authors and Chicago, and local artists.
Guests willing to brave the Chicago chill could party out in front of the main stage or cozy up at one of the nearby hotel parties or VIP rooms connected to the event. We provided equipment and personnel for video and audio feeds to broadcast the event across 40 NBC stations and Telemundo so that viewers across the country could be a part of the celebration. As the larger-than-life New Year's star rose above the skyline on the Hyatt, public audiences could count down to the new year and experience the excitement downtown.
Guests from 39 U.S. states purchased tickets, bringing in people from around the country. They all shared their experiences on social media with #CHITOWNRISING — the fourth-highest trending hashtag in the U.S. on New Year's Eve. Most importantly, the event generated $20 million in economic impact and shared positive images of the City of Chicago with millions around the world.